Case of the week

The estate of Francis Bacon is suing his former gallery, claiming that it exploited him. Malborough Fine Art is accused of having undervalued Bacon's work and then benefiting from their sale. The estate claims that 33 works painted between 1972 and 1981 do not feature in any accounts supplied by the gallery which, it is alleged, exercised 'undue influence' over the artist. The estate claims Bacon was financially naive when he signed an agreement giving the gallery 'sole and exclusive' rights over his work. Marlborough instructed its own solicitor to look after Bacon's legal and property matters and appointed an accountant to complete his tax returns.